Questions posed by a patient about X-ray
Hi Dr. A. H. Serdar,firstly thank you so much for taking the time to answer these questions! I have some question about radiologic room such as: Why are radiologists wearing lead apron? Will I get one? Why have radiologists placed heavy gonad shield fabric on me? What is that badge (TLD) radiologists are wearing? Will I become radioactive as a result of this x-ray examination? A friend of mine went for radiation therapy treatments and lost her hair. Will this x-ray examination make me lose my hair?
Lead apron is a protective shield of lead and rubber that worn by a patient, radiologic technologist or radiologist during exposure to x-rays. It is planned to protect against extreme exposure to ionizing radiation. On the other hand, X-rays were found to be able to penetrate through materials of light atoms like flesh to make image of internal part of body. The heavier atoms like metal absorb them; subsequently we cannot use lead apron over the imaging part of your body, but we are using lead apron for protect against severe exposure of the reproductive and other essential body organs to ionizing radiation.
Gonad shield is used to protect the gonad area of you from the primary radiation beam during radiographic exams. Gonad shielding is an effective method of reducing radiation dose to your reproductive organs and reduces the risk of genetic effects in future generations. You have to know that the side effects of X-rays start at the cellular level, but only regular exposure to X-rays will produce any noticeable side effects.
TLD badges are used to discover radiation at levels that can be harmful to medical radiologic technologist or other people that deal with radiation. Thermoluminescent dosimeters are prepared from fluoride chips that evaluate cumulative exposure to ionizing radiation. They are worn for periods of around three months and are then processed to establish the dosage of radiation detected.
Will I become radioactive as a result of x-ray?
This cannot happen, because x-rays do not induce radioactivity.
Lost hair :
Radiation therapy can cause hair loss for the reason that it damages cells and it only accurse on the part of body being treated. The chemotherapy can cause hair loss too, but in chemo hair lose happens all over the body. In the radiation therapy patients can begin losing hair in two to three weeks after primary radiation therapy session. Usually during the one week the hair around the treatment area will fall out. The hair might grow back three to six months after healing is over and may quality of hair changes. Sometimes hair never grows back.
Thanks – Dr. A.H. Serdar